To what extent can one trade off intensity for duration?
I am training for the Abu Dhabi triathlon (dont hate me) in March, and am targeting a 3hr finish for the 100km ride at mid-Z3 pace.
My problem is that given my location, I cannot really do 3 hrs steady tempo riding. I did a 3 hr ride today (mix on the trainer and the road) and my plan was to fit in one hour tempo on the road along with some hill climbs, before getting on the trainer for some SST intervals.
I got my target 190W average for the tempo ride, but due to the nature of the roads and winds, over 20' were at FTP/VO2/anerobic, which obviously puts a very different training load than simply doing 60' at tempo.
Would 2-3 1-1.5 hour interval sessions (SST/FTP/VO2) on weekdays and 2 long (6 hrs combined) aerobic rides on weekends be a good method to train for this ride?
Or do I really need to find a way to do 3 hrs at tempo in order to get better at doing 3 hrs at tempo?